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Forecast: Fla.’s Economy Will Grow – New Homes Not So Much

UCF forecast: Fla.’s gross domestic product will grow 2.8% this year and new-home construction will rise – but not enough to make up for the current shortage.

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) – Florida’s economy will grow in 2020, but the state will experience growing pains from a lack of housing and a weak transportation network, according to an economic forecast from the University of Central Florida.

The forecast released late last month from the school’s Institute for Economic Forecasting said that Florida’s equivalent of gross domestic product – the value of all goods and services – will grow by 2.8% in 2020 and 2021, but it will slow down to 2.4% in 2022.

Labor force growth in Florida will average 1.6% annually over the next three years, according to the forecast.

It also predicted that Florida’s unemployment rate would drop to 3% this year, with the strongest job growth coming from professional and business services, construction and leisure and hospitality.

New home construction will increase but not quickly enough to make up for the shortage of single family homes available, according to the forecast.

There will be more than 134,000 new houses started this year, and more than 135,000 new houses started next year, the forecast said.

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